Sunday, April 4, 2010

City Views, Country Dreams

Good evening from New York on Easter evening.

Our city's weather decided to finally get into the swing of spring, just in time for today's traditional parade of finery, and extravagance, along Fifth Avenue.

I'd made plans to meet friends at the northern end of the promenade path and took my camera along for the walk. As I walked towards our meeting place, I could not resist taking this reflective picture of a shop that features paper goods.

When I reached Fifth Avenue it was clear that having the street closed to vehicular traffic, it was a great day for folks to walk up and down the Avenue. This was the view down Fifth Avenue.

This was the view up Fifth Avenue. Note the brilliant blue sky, and a glimpse of Central Park's trees just beyond the sunlit edge of the elegant Bergdorf Goodman shop. Taxi cabs were obliged to make a turn. The policeman waved them right and left, but they could not proceed down Fifth as usual.

Last year, my Easter Parade photographs were taken in locations nearer to the center of it all, around St. Patrick's Cathedral. This year, my friends were not enthusiastic about venturing that much into the thick of the extravagant regalia. And so, the following photos will have a gentler theme. Many will show family groups.
The next photo is to two twenty-somethings, wearing wonderful vintage outfits. The young lady on the left still has her boyfriend's jacket on. The day will warm up.

What a little beauty in her mother's embrace. We wished each other Happy Easter.

This teenager still had braces on her teeth, and gave me a huge smile, when I complimented her color sense.

These two fellows were very nonchalant in parading in their festive headgear.

Black and red are colors not usually associated with Easter. Yet that did not deter this lady. You can see that another photograph was being taken simultaneously to mine.

Now this trio was dressed in rather traditional finery. Quite elegant.

Remember the young lady with the black jacket. Jacket is gone now. The sun has come out, bringing more warmth and more cameras.

Look at this sweet picture. This young lady is still keeping her lightweight cardi on. And she's got her Easter basket handy.

And here is another cutie in rosy pink. Note the little shoes.

Here is another view of a family group. I admit that I was having a hard time staying in conversation with my friends, while still keeping an eye out for promising bonnets or other interesting photo ops. Every now and then, I would just call out, "I'll be right back," and run off after a hat or outfit. I was not always in time to click in the proper light or focus.

This fellow was doing a grand business outfitting folks without hats. He could provide all sorts of shapes, sizes, colors.

The following picture is rather tacky, but still rather graphically okay. The flowering trees are arranged on staggered setbacks midway up the side of a gleaming building.

The photo below involves a contingent with a costumed dog. I am not sure if the dog was originally riding in the baby buggy.

These ladies in their beautifully elegant kimonos agreed to have me take their picture.

Most Fifth Avenue shops were closed today. An exception was the Lindt Chocolate shop. They were keeping busy supplying quick energy for the paraders.

This little bunny got a great view from her daddy's shoulders.

I did not seen anyone else wearing a kilt. This gentleman looked terrific.

The colors of the Gap store windows mimic that of the lady with the bonnet.

Now here is a stylish mother/daughter duo. The both favor large hats.

Here's an old-fashioned fashionista, complete with puffed sleeves and pigtails.

Her colleague also had a marvelous sense of style.

These gentlemen went in several directions with regard to their outfits.

And here are some wonderful striped trousers (not pin-stripes!) And take a look at that beard.

Doesn't this little girl have a sweet expression? Her parents were so kind to let me take her picture.

This lad is definitely a J. Depp fan. I just wish that my photograph had turned out better. He was a charmer.

For those who've been wondering, yes, there are many churches along the parade route and many paraders did go to Easter services

I could not resist clicking a picture of this sunny yellow clad family.

Now that's a hat. I think that this is another view of the mother who appeared in an earlier photo with her daughter.

Here is another picture of a beautiful Fifth Avenue church.

Mid-day sunlight does provide some dramatic lighting possibilities in the midst of some tall buildings' shadows.

This lady decided to add a little pink fluffy something to her otherwise rather subdued chapeau.

So many golden flowers growing from just one hat. Wow!

And so, although there were many more sights to be seen, we decided to turn around and make our way towards Central Park. The day had grown very warm, and many folks were shedding their jackets.

At 58th Street we made the turn westward, and I caught a shot of the corner across from the Plaza Hotel. If you look carefully, you can see the clear glass cube of the Apple Store, where lots of enthusiasts have been purchasing the latest triumph.

Here's a view of a side entrance to the Plaza. It is now a condominium, and not quite the glory that it was when the story book character Eloise ran through its halls.

As we neared a pathway into the Park, we were cut off by horse drawn carriage traffic. Apparently, the horses's drivers think they are always due the right of way. This picture makes it look as if the white horse is wearing some sort of red bonnet. He was not. It is the back of a carriage.

We walked through the park past all sorts of lovely blooms. And then I said farewell to my pals. I had to get home to start packing more boxes, emptying out another bookcase ahead of the next visit from my careful painter.

On my way home, I stopped by a newly opened shop offering authentic gelato. I am delighted to report that my first sampling, a fig gelato, was scrumptious.
Happy Easter!


  1. My goodness, you had a busy day, not only taking photos, but putting them together so beautifully! Glad you had such an interesting Easter.

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  3. I imagined I could hear the song "Easter Parade" as I read this Frances - and you're the photographer who has taken the place of the one to who would have immortalized everyone in the Rotogravure!

  4. I was also singing 'Easter Parade' - in my head, of course! So, is there a 'proper' organised parade? Or is it more like a passagiata (not sure if I've spelled that right), where people just wander around? It's fabulous that everyone takes the trouble though. Also, your weather seems to be ahead of ours, Central Park looks very springlike - we don't have nearly as much blossom on the trees as you have! Jealous!!

  5. What a great - happy - day. It seems to have drawn people together in celebration.

    Lovely to see your blossom too - you are definitely a little ahead of us.

  6. What wonderful photos Frances, you cant believe just how imaginative people can be! I loved the little girl holding the blue balloon, what a sweetie!
    Thank you for our tour.

  7. New Yorkers have such spirit and sense of fun. Isn't it great to see the effort everyone makes to show off their Easter Finery. Lovely collection of photos, Frances. Good luck with the rest of the painting.

  8. Hello from sunny Melbourne where we have been enjoying beautiful autumn weather over the Easter break. Thank you so much for sharing your photo's, it was such a treat to see everyone dressed up and parading their finery.

  9. Wonderful photo's of the Easter Parade in NY Frances, along that fine well known Fifth Avenue too.

    Such a lovely collection of many different gorgeous Bonnets. This is a Parade that we unfortunately do not have here in England, if so I would be sporting a rather fine hat myself, love hats.!

    Thank you for sharing with us dear Frances.


  10. Such lovely, lovely images,
    thank you for the energy and enthusiasm you put into capturing them so we all could come along with you, albeit virtually! And what a feast it is, I thoroughly enjoyed the whole event.

    I love that "tacky" (your adjective) graphic picture with the flowering trees and even more so the pear trees you captured in that little square across from the Plaza! I remember it well.


  11. What a lovely day in sunny New York City and no cars down 5th Avenue, that must be something to see. I love hats but don’t know where to wear one – it looks like there were so many there. Thanks for taking them in picture.

  12. What wonderful hats and costumes... did you wear a hat Frances? I like the sound of fig gelato!

  13. Wow Frances thank you for a fabulous day and for an amazing blog . . . how long did it take you to put it together for us . . .

  14. wow! so many wonderful photographs...that you for the glimpse of your world :o)

  15. What a great idea to have a big parade like that and everyone joining in and being happy. Thank you so much for sharing it with us Frances. Fabulous photies.

  16. Geee wizzzz what a day, i'm glad you took your camera along.xo

  17. THis is becoming a seasonal pleasure for me, Frances, checking out the wonderful hats and outfits on your stunning parade. I love the two young girls in their lace and stockings in particular - and think the boyfriend jacket sets it off perfectly!

  18. Thank you for the wonderful photos and great narrative of your Easter Day. I am so glad to see your entries for they are always so interesting. Please, keep up your terrific account of life in New York. I live in the area known as the "Metroplex" of Dallas and Ft. Worth. The area is now considered the third largest after New YORK and LOS ANGELES. We are now seeing the results of big city life. I love tea and tea parties. Do you ever go to tea at one of the New York tea rooms? We have some lovely places at antique malls.

  19. how lovely to accompany you on your visit to the Easter Parade.
    What I have been looking for in vain is your hat and costume. You must at least have worn a grand hat?

  20. Oh wow! What stunning photos - my favourite was the lady with the upswept specs, although the little cutie in pink was sweet. Sounds like yet another reason to return to your fabulous city.
    Sorry haven't been about much - lots on. Cx

  21. I really enjoyed this post. I'd always heard of the Easter parade in NY but this is my first time to see some of it. Quite an adventure for you... what fun! The park was beautiful too.

  22. That was a lot of fun!! Never been to an Easter parade in America.
    Have a wonderful weekend.
    Love, Ingrid

  23. Hello Frances,
    New Yorkers really know how to dress up and enjoy the Easter parade. I think you were very lucky to have a fine sunny day. You have proved once again your reporting skills. We all gain a flavour of the atmosphere and costumes with your colourful and interesting photographs.
    Glad to read that the decorating is going well. I am finding it is a slow job but one that feels good, when you compare the before and after. I look forward to the finished results.
    Enjoyed your spring flowers, a lovely walk with you through the park. millyx

  24. We spent Easter day on Long Island so I'm thrilled to see the Easter Parade through your discriminating lens.
    What a super sunny day!

    perfect for the spring outfits
    so well documented.

    Hope to see you very soon.
    Buster sends you a lick.

  25. What a lovely post ... Thank you for taking me to New York at Easter time!

  26. Wow! Those fancy dress outfits are amazing! :-)

  27. I love it all,the traditional elegance, the trendy young miss,the crazy hats,the little children. Wish I were there.

  28. What a great tradition that is, and such a wonderful community event, everyone looks very happy don't they. I'm very impressed by some of the outfits, splendid! Thank you for showing us all the splendour. Love Vanessa xxx

  29. Hi;
    Found you through Friko and I have absolutely loved this photo tour of my favorite city. I used to work in Manhattan and now live in the middle of nowhere (by choice) though I do miss the city.

    In fact, I'm scheming to fly out there just to get a city fix and hunt down the Gormley sculptures. :)

  30. What a marvellous day and I just loved everyone taking the time to dress up!

  31. I would love to see the Easter parade one of these days! So much fun! thanx for the photos!!

  32. I live in the country and have in the past ---years ago -lived in the city, but after 30 years of counrty life I could never go back to the city life. I sure enjoyed your pics! Please follow me as I have just started my blog page and I need followers badly. Thank-you,A.Anderson